Saturday, March 15, 2014

Why is "Find the Cutes" so Special?

On February 6, 2014, I was contacted by illustrator, Vincent Noot, through my Facebook Page asking if I could help spread the word about his latest project with his wife Celestial, a search book entitled Find the Cutes. He said that he would send me a PDF copy on the first week of March for review. I didn't think twice. It's nice to be part in making dreams into reality. 

According to Vincent, for the past year they have been putting hundreds of hours into drawing a children’s search book.  If you heard of “Where is Waldo?”, theirs is a similar concept, but it’s more focused on kids, with pages that are about a birthday party, petting zoo, swimming pool, playground, etc. 


Now that the book is done and they are investing in printing, they need some help.

On March 1st they launched a project on kickstarter.com. As stated in the website, Kickstarter is a crowd funding platform for creative projects---everything from films, games, and music to art, design, and technology. Every project creator sets their project's funding goal and deadline. If people like the project, they can pledge money to make it happen. If the project succeeds in reaching its funding goal, all backers' credit cards are charged when time expires. If the project falls short, no one is charged. Funding on Kickstarter is all-or-nothing.  

Vincent and Celestial want to achieve their goal, and they need our help. 


On March 6, I received the PDF copy, some photos, and a copy of this interview with Vincent Noot about Find the Cutes

I printed the soft copy immediately, let my son do the activities, and made a draft of my review about it.



Who are the Cutes?
"The Cutes are a family. Their last name is 'Cute' and all the kids’ names start with a 'C': Carissa, Chaz, Cade, Cammy, and Cindy. The story is based on the 'second-mom' phenomenon: As the oldest daughter you sometimes get to babysit your younger siblings a lot. That’s how it can work in bigger families. In every illustration I tried to show their innocence and playfulness."


What is “Find the Cutes - Playtime” all about?
 "Children are creative. They have a huge imagination. In society today, despite all the technology and opportunities, the greatest happiness is often found in the home. Children give families that extra enthusiastic energy. 'Find the Cutes - Playtime' is based on that concept. It sparks the imagination, stimulates dialogue without words, educates, entertains, and inspires."
This book consists of 12 pages:

1 Birthday Party
2 Swimming Pool
3 Playground
4 Toy Store
5 Petting Zoo
6 Supermarket
7 Soccer Game
8 The Fair
9 Ballet Studio
10 Scout Camp
11 Art Studio
12 First Day of School



Reasons to buy this book
"The world market is flooded with numerous children’s books, so if we wanted to make it big, we knew our book had to stand out. It had to have that extra something that makes you want it and be impressed with it, so that you recommend it to others personally and in reviews. You need to feel your money was worth it. So why buy 'Find the Cutes - Playtime?' Because it’s not a regular children’s book.
- It keeps you and your children entertained for hours.
- The illustrations look beautiful.
- It’s cute and funny.
- It’s educational."


What inspired you as an illustrator?
"As a child, I was much intrigued by search books. I spent hours looking for the right characters and objects on every page. But I discovered there weren’t that many different ones out there. Over the years, I developed a unique cartoon style that I was able to use for several companies and assignments. Together with my ideas and the concept of a search book, my wife (then girlfriend) and I came up with a search book and a fun family as the main characters."


  
How did you come up with each page, and how long did it take to draw them?
"Before each page, I brainstorm about as many creative, funny things that could happen. For example, I divided the Birthday Party page into section of balloons, ball pit, presents, etc. Children can be very silly. So I think of what they'd do with a balloon, like rubbing it over their hair, letting it go into the air, binding it to their ears, popping it, etc. Each page took almost 100 hours to sketch, draw, color on the computer, etc. Each person is hand-drawn and colored in Photoshop. My wife, Celestial, did most of the storytelling. The whole book took 1 year to finish. Some drawings are based on real events. Sometimes something funny that happened in our lives, comes back in the drawings. For instance, when I was dating my wife, we both took a bite of the same huge hotdog at the same time. So in the Swimming Pool page, I drew a boy and a girl eating a hotdog at the same time."



 Who is the book for?
"Children ages 3 and up. Adults could enjoy it too. With 12 pages of things to search for, kids could be entertained for hours. Not only are we going to make a book, but we are planning on making it a tablet game for the ipad, kindle, and other devices. That will be a stretch goal if we make it."
 Are you on social media?
"We have a website, www.findthecutes.com, which will be the means of selling our book once it’s updated with a payment system. We are also on Facebook, Google Plus, Pinterest, Twitter, and Tumblr. Feel free to look us up and follow us."


Are you going to make a sequel?

"Yes. We are planning on an entire series of 10 books The next book will be called 'Find the Cutes - Festival Fun' and will have fun search pages about Christmas, Easter, and Halloween, but also about the Tomato Festival in Spain, Songkran in Thailand, and Sinterklaas in the Netherlands. It will also have 12 pages and a storyline. We already started working on it."



When will it be available?
 
"The book is completed, so we now have a kickstarter campaign from March 1st until March 31st. This is the link: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/92560380/find-the-cutes-playtime?ref=discovery. You can sponsor/back our project in those 30 days and get discounts that way. We are getting the website www.findthecutes.com ready for ordering, so we are in the process of getting the book printed and attaching a payment system to the website. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions at findthecutes@gmail.com or personally to my account at vincentnoot@gmail.com."
 


 In My Opinion...

 

Find the Cutes is a good search book for both kids and adults who love challenging activities like my nine year old son, Ross.



Doing the activity in this book not just sparks the imagination, stimulates dialogue without words, educates, entertains, and inspires but also develops problem solving skills, patience, perseverance, and being keen to details. It could also be a fun parent and child activity that promotes the importance of family bonding.

The book also teaches the importance of being a responsible family member. Parents and children should always have a venue where they could talk and have fun as a family.

I think it is great and all worth it to help Vincent and Celestial Noot get more funds to have the book printed. Other kids and families should have a chance to enjoy it too. 

 I have both PDF and hard copies. I've seen how the couple put their heart and hard work into it. It's pure labor of love. The illustrations are very detailed, colorful, and catchy. Most of all, the story is all about family.

 
 
You may go to THIS LINK to know more about Find the Cutes or HERE to back this project for a minimum of $1.00 pledge. This project will only be funded if at least $7,843 is pledged by 3:45 PM Australian Western Standard Time (AWST). Sharing this on your own social media accounts can be a big help too. Your friends might be interested to pledge and get a copy! Thanks!


4 comments :

  1. The illustration is nice, it is better than Where is Wally? book which is one of my son's favorite book.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi, Mommy Levy! Thanks for visiting my blog! My son also loves "Where is Wally?". Yes, I agree with you that the illustration of "Find the Cutes" is nicer. It is very challenging too. Ross and I had a great time searching.

    ReplyDelete
  3. How very interesting! The idea reminds me of Larry Alcala's cartoons. My dad used to call me to him so we can look for the cartoonist's head among the comic strips he published. :)

    Will talk things over with the hubby regarding the pledge. Looks like a worthy one to help out in. :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hello, Mommy May! Find the Cutes also reminds me and hubby of Larry Alcala's cartoons. Wow, that's nice to know! Thank you so much in behalf of Mr. & Mrs. Noot! Thanks for stopping by!

    ReplyDelete

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